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How to spot a hidden camera in your vacation rental

Posted at 11:48 AM, Jun 17, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-17 11:48:02-04

WINTER GARDEN, Fla. — If you're booking a stay at an Airbnb or hotel this summer, you may feel more secure knowing there are no hidden cameras watching your every move — if you know what to look out for.

From alarm clocks, to phone chargers, and even car keys... you can put a camera in them.

"They're getting harder to detect," said Bobby Brown of Surveillance Plus, a company that sells cameras that could be nearly impossible to see with the naked eye.

Cameras are getting smaller and smaller. One we saw could even be hidden on the inside of a screw.

A good first step, Brown says, is to search for spy cameras online and compare them to what you think you may be seeing.

For about $140, you can buy a device that can help you detect even the smallest lens or a wi-fi enabled camera.

Airbnb says it does not allow hosts to use hidden cameras or place them in private spaces, and hosts are supposed to tell their guests about any cameras they do have.

In Florida, it's against the law to film anyone without their permission if they are somewhere they can reasonably expect privacy.

Attorney Karen Wonsetler tells us what to do if you do discover hidden equipment:

"If you're renting the whole house, you have an expectation [of privacy] on the inside of the home," she said. "We all know that if there's a Ring doorbell outside, we probably don't have an expectation of privacy if we're standing in front of the Ring doorbell."

This story was originally reported by Connor Hansen of Fox affiliate WOFL in Orlando.